It's Anti-Bullying Day and kids are being asked to wear orange as a sign that they won't stand for bullying. I wonder, though, if what's really being promoted is Anti-Bullies Day, since the majority of public opinion seems to be on the side of the 'victims'?
I'm more in favour of Let's Get Conscious Day… Particularly that we get conscious of universal laws and how bullying fits into them. Because upsetting as bullying can be, it's not a sign that things are broken and dysfunctional; there's actually a 'hidden order' at work…
Ken Pierce is a Canadian psychologist and co-author of The Dance of Bullying – A Breakthrough Tool for Teachers and Parents, and he teaches that bullying is a process that is governed by universal laws that are as absolute as the Law of Gravity. None of us would argue with the law of gravity – we understand how absolute it is. But most of us spend most of our lives arguing with several other equally absolute laws – the Law of Polarity, the Law of Symmetry, and the Law of Conservation.
What are those Laws and how do they relate to bullying?
1) The Law of Polarity tells us that the Universe is comprised of complementary opposites and together they form wholes. We wouldn’t exist without these opposites (eg. male and female) and we only know one by virtue of the other (eg. happy and sad, hot and cold). It’s literally impossible, in our Universe, to have a one-sided anything. The other side might be hidden from our view, but it’s always there. (And this applies not only to physical phenomena, but also to metaphysical phenomena – i.e. our thoughts and feelings and relationships.)
2) The Law of Symmetry is revealed by the fact that everything in the Universe exists in a state of balance, or equilibrium, from subatomic particles right up to galaxy clusters.
If we keep these latter two laws in mind, we can see that bullying is an event where two people, one with a negative charge and the other with a positive charge, are attracted together in a dynamic equilibrium. They counterbalance each other.
The bully has the positive charge and the ‘bullied’ has the negative charge, and they are unconsciously attracted to each other to enhance the learning or evolution of each person because positive and negative charges attract each other to neutralise and restore the equilibrium that is fundamental to the universe.
During a bullying experience, one person is exaggerating themself, their needs, their perspective and playing ‘careless’, and the other person is minimising themself, their needs, their perspective, and playing ‘careful’.
We can all see that the bully needs to learn to respect others more (be ‘caring’ of others), and the bullied needs to learn to respect and value self more (be ‘caring’ of self). When each does this, balance is restored.
So no-one is a ‘victim’; we simply have two people, one over-charged and the other under-charged, unconsciously attempting to balance themselves. When they do, they literally disappear out of each other’s life.
3) The Law of Conservation states that nothing is created or destroyed; it just changes form. This law is telling us that we won’t eradicate bullying, it will just change form.
What’s the current new form? Cyber bullying. Different groups will become the bullies and the bullied over time because bullying actually serves an evolutionary purpose and trying to eliminate it will only cause it to become even more entrenched.
Consider this: since governments declared the War on Cancer, we now have skyrocketing rates of cancer. One hundred years ago, one in 8000 people had cancer; today that number is closer to one in three (already one in two in America), and we still have no ‘cure’.
‘What you resist, persists’ is another universal principle. In other words, when we condemn and attack and fight something, it grows. When we attempted to destroy bugs we ended up with superbugs; now our attempts to kill weeds are creating super weeds.
On the other hand, when we appreciate something, it can be transformed. Cancer often draws a fear reaction and people go to war against it with poison and sharp weapons… But when we listen to the message and make conscious lifestyle changes, tumours shrink and disappear or become benign.
Where people are disempowered, bullies turn up naturally, to wake those people up. They don’t always wake up, which is why we can end up with some very disturbing outcomes, so the more we do to become conscious and aware, and to empower ourselves to value both ourselves and others in equal balance, the better. Bullies need a healthy dose of self-doubt; they need to question their position. The 'bullied', on the other hand, needs to value self more and develop confidence and skills.
It's interesting to observe the hidden benefits in being bullied – how it serves us in waking up, deciding we deserve better treatment, and empowering ourselves. For every 'victim' who doesn't wake up, there is someone who does, proving that it's possible. As Psychiatrist Professor Patrick McGorry says, "Suicide is preventable".
As a community, our task is to recognise the order and assist both sides of the equation in becoming more conscious and empowered. The first step is to learn how to recognise the blessings in apparent crisis. Read my next blog for a true story example of how an 18 year old came to terms with a critical 'failure' experience.
– And do check out The Dance of Bullying – a Breakthrough Tool for Teachers and Parents by Ken Pierce and Alice Bailey. (www.clarendonconsulting.com)